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Elephant Gin

Robin Gerlach was inspired to create Elephant Gin after a trip to Africa, in which he witnessed first-hand the effect the reduction of natural habitat for farming and the horror of ivory poaching is having on the African elephant. It was here he met wildlife photographer Tessa Wienker, while she was working with Space for Elephants Foundation, and the pair decided to team up to create a socially-minded business to help preserve this beautiful animal. The duo decided that they would prefer to create a physical product that people could enjoy and relate to rather than a charity. As Gerlach is a keen gin enthusiast, he began researching African botanicals to combine his desire to see more radical ingredients utilised in gin and maintaining a narrative that suited the project’s inspiration. A schnapps distillery in Germany was found that was willing to make this gin and, after a year and 30 iterations, the recipe for Elephant Gin was perfected. The location housed a 400 litre copper Arnold Holstein still, which would become a worthy home to a quite brilliant botanical celebration. The African botanicals that eventually were used include Buchu, Devil’s Claw and Lion’s Tail (plants and herbs native to South Africa), as well as Baobab (the fruit of the baobab tree) and African Wormwood. These botanicals may seem exotic to the average person, but considering they are paired with juniper, Chinese ginger, elderflower sourced from the Ukraine and Poland, French lavender, Indonesian cassia bark, locally sourced fresh apples, Mexican pimento berries, mountain pine needles from the Salzburger Mountains and Spanish sweet orange peel, it’s clear that Elephant Gin is not afraid of creating an ambitious product. The branding and marketing is a particularly impressive aspect of Elephant Gin. It wasn’t just the plight of African elephants that informed the theme of this gin, but also 19th Century explorers and their journeys throughout the East African wildlife, and so-called ‘sundowner’ drinks (sunset cocktails served after a day in the South African bush, which have become a big tradition in South Africa). Combining these themes, Elephant Gin has some of the most thoughtful and original packaging you’re likely to see. The logo design is in the style of stamp, complete with a proud, trumpeting elephant. It’s a reference to the letters African explorers would send home, which partners the map that fills the rest of the picture. Littered with red dots, it represents the journey both explorers and elephants alike would have taken across the plain. The custom-made bottles resemble flasks; archaic and rustic, they were carefully assembled to provoke the image of explorers carrying similar bottles. Each batch of Elephant Gin is also named after great elephants that the partner foundations are attempting to or have previously protected. The personality and consideration of the brand’s aesthetic does Elephant Gin a lot of credit. Distinctive in both its outlook and approach, Elephant Gin is fast making a name for itself as a brand that produces gin you could appreciate on flavour alone. Its Elephant Dry Gin has won a glut of awards, including being crowned Spirit of the Year and winning Double Gold in the Gin category from the World Spirits Award in 2016, as well picking up Gold in the Gin category in 2017 International Spirits Challenge. It has since branched to other editions, such as the experimental Elephant Sloe Gin and Elephant Aged Gin. However, it is not just great gin that defines this brand. True to its word, Elephant Gin contributes 15% of all of its gins’ profits to elephant conservation, including foundations such as Space for Elephants, Big Life Foundation and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. Now that’s something worth raising a glass to.

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Elephant Sloe Gin product image
Elephant Sloe Gin
50 cl / 35% ABV
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7 Reviews
Elephant Dry Gin product image
Elephant Dry Gin
50 cl / 45% ABV
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26 Reviews